Jordan Brand

Michael Jordan Tag

Phil Knight famously proclaimed that he wasn’t in the shoe business – he was in the entertainment business. Luckily for Phil, when Nike signed Michael Jordan in 1984 they secured the greatest entertainer the NBA has ever seen. That landmark deal has since become basketball folklore. Nike agreed to pay the rookie player a vertiginous $500,000 per year – plus stock options! Fine print stipulated that Nike could walk away if sales didn’t reach the ambitious total of $4 million by the end of the third year. Fuelled by MJ’s charisma and effortless showmanship, cash registers racked up over $70 million in sales just two months after the first Jordan shoe was released in 1985. If basketball is defined by statistics, the numbers on these boards may just be the most impressive of Jordan’s career. Nike continues to orchestrate Jumpman hysteria to the tune of $3 billion annually.